We need men out there who are in the game—the most important game of their life—working hard and striving toward the goal to be the best they can be, to be All Pro Dads. Former head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers and four-time Super Bowl winner Chuck Noll said, “Champions are champions not because they do anything extraordinary but because they do the ordinary things better than anyone else.”
In other words, you don’t have to do spectacular highlight-reel type of things to be a Super Bowl winner. There are fundamentals that it takes to play the game. Executing those fundamentals day in and day out, that’s how you become great. That’s how you win. That’s how you become a champion.
Just as knowing and executing the fundamentals of football are key to a player becoming an All-Pro, knowing and executing the fundamentals of fatherhood are key to a father becoming an All Pro Dad. And the two most important fundamentals for a father are love and leadership.
Simply put, love is all about giving—giving selflessly and sacrificially to our wives, our kids and others no matter what it costs us personally. And your capacity to love will determine your capacity to lead.
In other words, when your spouse and children know you want what’s best for them, they’ll follow you. They’ll say to themselves: “You’ve loved me. You’ve earned the right to lead me. I’ll follow you.”
Here are three essentials you need to know to love and, in turn, lead your kids well.
1. Love your wife. For those who are married, actively loving your wife will radically strengthen your marriage and will also be incredibly beneficial to your children. The number one source of security for kids is when they know that their dad loves their mother and is steadfastly committed to her for life. When times get tough, remember that your spouse is not the enemy. You are on the same team. When my wife, Susan, and I have disagreements over things like disciplining our children or finances, she’ll often say to me, “Remember, I’m on your team.” Marriage is the ultimate team sport. You were designed to complete each other, not compete with each other.